Swedish mobile gaming firm LeoVegas is becoming an evermore formidable player in the UK market, by acquiring all the online casino operations at the multi- brand operator, Intellectual Property Software for £65m.
IPS, currently operates 22 individually branded sites, including 21.co.uk, Slotboss, BetUK and UK Casino-18 of which target British players; the other four are live in Sweden.
The move comes only one month since LeoVegas bought a controlling stake in the casino streaming site, CasinoGrounds for £2.7m, which itself came just weeks after the E100m acquisition of UK-facing rival, Royal Panda.
“To be able at our six-year anniversary of the launch of LeoVegas to conduct this remarkable acquisition feels just great,” said Gustaf Hagman, LeoVegas’ Group CEO.
“Following the acquisition of Royal Panda, LeoVegas now works with two scalable brands. We believe that in larger markets our global brands, LeoVegas and Royal Panda, can be complemented with a local, multi-brand strategy.”
“The UK market is a very large and mature market and that is the reason to work with several brands that attract various types of customers. In IPS we see several attractive attributes, and they have tremendous momentum in their growth and profitability.
IPS has made a name for itself as one of the most effective in the market at customer acquisition. Its strategy, which is based on demographic segmentation and targeting, uses keyword optimisation aligned to its multiple brands, enabling to pinpoint players and channel them appropriately. 96 per- cent of its revenues come from the UK, and 73 percent via mobile.
The deal also includes related assets from European Domain Management, also based in Alderney, and the outright purchase of Rocket 9 – a marketing services business based in Newcastle, UK.
IPS revenues rose by 50 percent in the fourth quarter of 2017, to £11.7m – which together with EDM and Rocket 9 produced £3.8m in earnings.
“Combined with one of the market’s most effective customer acquisition models, we are now gaining a firm strong- hold in the UK with the acquisition of 85 employees with local expertise,” Hagman added.
“With this acquisition, we are adding a company culture with a strong technology and product focus which is a perfect fit with LeoVegas’ to further strengthen the group’s position as the leading game-tech company.”
IPS uses Bede Gaming’s technical platform, with whom LeoVegas has already signed a services agreement to continue doing so.
In November last year LeoVegas passed the threshold for being classified as a “unicorn” in its ongoing IPO – a startup valued at more than $1bn.